Ancira Nissan Compares 2017 Nissan Maxima VS 2017 Buick LaCrosse Near New Braunfels, TX

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2017 Nissan Maxima

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VS

2017 Buick LaCrosse

Safety Comparison

The Maxima has standard Active Head Restraints, which use a specially designed headrest to protect the driver and front passenger from whiplash. During a rear-end collision, the Active Head Restraints system moves the headrests forward to prevent neck and spine injuries. The LaCrosse doesn’t offer a whiplash protection system.

The Maxima Platinum has a standard Around View® Monitor to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The LaCrosse only offers a rear monitor and front and rear parking sensors that beep or flash a light. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the sides.

The Maxima Platinum’s driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The LaCrosse doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.

Both the Maxima and the LaCrosse have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front-wheel drive, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available crash mitigating brakes, blind spot warning systems and rear cross-path warning.

For its top level performance in all IIHS frontal, side, rear impact and roof-crush tests, with its optional front crash prevention system, and its available headlight’s “Acceptable” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the Maxima its highest rating: “Top Pick Plus” for 2017, a rating granted to only 54 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The LaCrosse is only a standard “Top Pick” for 2017.

Engine Comparison

As tested in Motor Trend the Nissan Maxima is faster than the Buick LaCrosse:

 

Maxima

LaCrosse

Zero to 60 MPH

5.7 sec

6.1 sec

Quarter Mile

14.2 sec

14.6 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

100.5 MPH

97.9 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range Comparison

The Maxima has 2.2 gallons more fuel capacity than the LaCrosse FWD’s standard fuel tank (18 vs. 15.8 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups. The Maxima has 1.8 gallons more fuel capacity than the LaCrosse AWD’s standard fuel tank (18 vs. 16.2 gallons).

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

The Maxima’s standard front and rear disc brakes are vented to help dissipate heat for shorter stops with less fading. The rear discs on the LaCrosse are solid, not vented.

The Maxima stops shorter than the LaCrosse:

 

Maxima

LaCrosse

 

70 to 0 MPH

168 feet

173 feet

Car and Driver

Tires and Wheels Comparison

For better traction, the Maxima has larger tires than the LaCrosse (245/45R18 vs. 235/50R18).

The Maxima’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 45 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the LaCrosse’s standard 50 series tires.

The Maxima has a standard easy tire fill system. When inflating the tires, the vehicle’s integrated tire pressure sensors keep track of the pressure as the tires fill and tell the driver when the tires are inflated to the proper pressure. The LaCrosse doesn’t offer vehicle monitored tire inflation.

The Maxima offers an optional full size spare tire so a flat doesn’t interrupt your trip. A full size spare isn’t available on the LaCrosse, it requires you to depend on a temporary spare, which has mileage and speed limitations, or roadside assistance and a tow-truck.

Suspension and Handling Comparison

The Maxima 3.5 SR handles at .87 G’s, while the LaCrosse Essence pulls only .83 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.

Chassis Comparison

The Maxima is 4.7 inches shorter than the LaCrosse, making the Maxima easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

Passenger Space Comparison

The Maxima has 1 inch more front headroom and 3 inches more front legroom than the LaCrosse.

Cargo Capacity Comparison

To allow full utilization of available cargo room, the Maxima’s trunk lid uses concealed beam hinges that don’t intrude into the trunk. The LaCrosse’s useful trunk space is reduced by its intrusive beam hinge.

A standard locking glovebox (which can’t be accessed with the valet key) keeps your small valuables safer in the Maxima. The LaCrosse doesn’t offer locking storage for small valuables.

Ergonomics Comparison

The Maxima’s instruments include an oil pressure gauge and a temperature gauge – which could save your engine! Often ‘idiot lights’ don’t warn you until damage has been done. The LaCrosse does not have an oil pressure gauge.

If the front windows are left down on the Maxima the driver can raise them using the key in the outside lock cylinder. On a hot day the driver can lower the windows from outside the vehicle using the key in the outside lock cylinder or the keyless remote. The driver of the LaCrosse can only operate the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.

The Intelligent Key standard on the Maxima allows you to unlock the driver’s door, trunk and start the engine all without removing a key from pocket or purse. This eliminates searching for keys before loading groceries, getting in the vehicle in bad weather or making a hurried start to your trip. The Buick LaCrosse’s Keyless Access doesn’t unlock the trunk.

The Maxima has a standard locking fuel door with a remote release located convenient to the driver. A locking fuel door helps prevent vandalism, such as sugar in the tank and fuel theft. The LaCrosse doesn’t offer a locking fuel door.

The Maxima’s standard speed-sensitive wipers speed up when the vehicle does, so that the driver doesn’t have to continually adjust the speed of the wipers. The LaCrosse’s manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted. The Maxima Platinum’s standard wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically according to the amount of rainfall on the windshield.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) conducts detailed tests on headlights for their range both straight ahead and in curves and to be certain they don’t exceed acceptable amounts of glare to oncoming drivers. The Maxima’s available headlights were rated “Acceptable” by the IIHS, while the LaCrosse’s headlights are rated “Poor.”

Economic Advantages Comparison

Insurance will cost less for the Maxima owner. The Car Book by Jack Gillis rates the Maxima with a number “3” insurance rate while the LaCrosse is rated higher at a number “8” rate.

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the Maxima is less expensive to operate than the LaCrosse because it costs $423 less to do the manufacturer’s suggested maintenance for 50,000 miles. Typical repairs cost much less on the Maxima than the LaCrosse, including $18 less for a water pump, $121 less for front brake pads, $26 less for a starter, $18 less for a fuel pump, $534 less for front struts, $318 less for a timing belt/chain and $222 less for a power steering pump.

Recommendations Comparison

J.D. Power and Associates rated the Maxima first among large cars in owner reported satisfaction. This includes how well the vehicle performs and satisfies its owner’s expectations. The LaCrosse isn’t in the top three.

The Nissan Maxima outsold the Buick LaCrosse by over two to one during the 2016 model year.

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